Concept Albums have been a dying breed for a while, and have been particularly rare in country music. It’s even more difficult in a “New. Now. Next.” world of digital streaming services to stand out with such an album but that’s exactly what Ashley McBryde and her friends have done with Ashley McBryde Presents: Lindeville.
This 13 track Ashley McBryde Presents: Lindeville features well-written story songs about characters from a small town, the kind of characters that are in EVERY small town in America, and the kind of characters that populated many of the songs written by the late, great songwriter Dennis Linde, the namesake for the fictional town these characters reside in. Artists featured on the album (Ashley serves more as a host tan as the actual artist of these tracks) include Brothers Osborne, Brandy Clark, Aaron Raitiere, Pillbox Patti, Caylee Hammack, and Benjy Davis. McBryde does sing on several of the songs and All but two of them are written be the collective of Ashley McBryde, Aaron Raitiere, Connie Harrington, Brandy Clark, Benjy Davis and Nicolette Hayford (“Pillbox Patti”). The two not written by the collective are “Jesus Jenny” a song written by Raitiere and Jon Decious and “When Will I Be Loved” a song that has been a hit a couple of times, once for it’s original artist (and writer) The Everly Brothers and, later, Linda Ronstadt. The version of that song here has the biggest chance to be a radio single if one were to be released from this wonderful album.
Ashley enlisted John Osborne (of Brothers Osborne) to produce the album and notable (among an album of standout) songs are opener “Brenda Put Your Bra On,” “Bonfire At Tina’s, “The Missed Connection Section of the Lindeville Gazette,” “When Will I Be Loved,” and closer “Lindeville,” the solo song featuring host Ashley McBryde. Ashley McBryde Presents: Lindeville only takes 34 minutes to run through from start to end but it’s one of the tightest, well-constructed collection of music to come out of country music in 2022.